A transcriptional fusion composed of the CaMV 35S promoter, a 19 kD zein cDNA, and the 3' flanking regions from the 0' to 1' T(R) T-DNA genes was introduced into tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. The accumulation of RNA generated from this transcriptional fusion varied both temporally and spatially in all tissues examined in greenhouse-grown tobacco plants, suggesting that the CaMV 35S promoter is not constitutive. Younger, actively dividing leaf, stem, root, and flower tissues contained higher steady state levels of zein RNA than did older, more quiescent tissues. Zein RNA levels greatly decreased during seed development and were undetectable in the mature seed. In addition, the two RNA termination or processing signals present in our construct were differentially utilized during seed development.